Park for a fee on 100 roads

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By DEEPANKAR GANGULY
  • Published 28.07.07
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The civic authorities will introduce fee parking on 100 roads in the city by the middle of August. This will increase the capacity of fee-parking zones in Calcutta from 6,630 cars to 10,000 cars.

Also, from next month, those who collect parking fees on behalf of cooperatives will be required to wear uniforms.

The Calcutta Municipal Corporation (CMC) plans to demarcate fee-parking zones to prevent illegal collection of parking fees beyond the specified area. The civic body is mulling a grace period of half an hour on an hourly slot so that a parking attendant cannot charge double from a motorist for being 10 minutes late.

Currently, there are fee-parking zones on 350 roads, managed by 28 cooperatives. The civic body earns Rs 5 crore every year by leasing out the parking lots.

“The revenue will go up to over Rs 12 crore if the parking lots are leased out through open bidding,” pointed out a civic revenue official.

Mayoral council member Faiyaz Ahmed Khan, who is looks after parking, said that though 6,630 cars can be parked officially on specified city roads at a given point of time, more than 10,000 cars are parked illegally. Parking lot attendants or local toughs collect the charges from the drivers of illegally parked cars. Parking charges are collected from motorists even on Sundays, though there are no parking charges on the day.

About Rs 200 crore is illegally collected as parking fees every year. The latest move is a bid to check the problem.

Following complaints of extortion and misbehaviour against of fee-parking lot operators, the mayor had decided to blacklist some cooperatives and float a tender for parking lots. He backtracked in the face of pressure from his party.

The cooperatives are against the demarcation of fee-parking lots.